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Why Jamie Dornan Was Terrifed of Singing in ‘Belfast’

“Extra” spoke with Jamie Dornan and Caitriona Balfe about their emotional new movie “Belfast,” which also features a little singing and dancing!

Jamie revealed that it felt like “a release” to be able to sing for the movie. He shared, “It comes at a time in the film when you really want it, you feel like you've really earned it for us, and where the characters are that they need that release after all the pain they've gone through.”

“We were terrified ‘cause we had dance moves. I recorded a vocal after, but I'm lip-synching on the day and also just making sure this connection comes across,” Dornan added. “It was a really fun day, and Caitriona just made it so easy and we were just so bonded by the rehearsal of it that day that I think we were so happy to be doing it and getting it done.”

Caitriona shared her two cents, saying, “Up until that point, we had been filming a lot of just the sort of ‘nuclear family,’ so our days had been quite small on set. That was the first day we had everybody together. I think initially we were like, ‘We're gonna have that many people under one roof in COVID?’ And then it was like, ‘Oh ,wow we actually haven't been around that many people for months and months!’ so it had such a party atmosphere and everybody was so happy to be there. It was great.”

Despite how intense some of their scenes together were, Jamie pointed out that they were “fun” to shoot. He explained, “For the most part, we felt we had ownership of what to do there and lucky we were aligned with it.”

Jamie and Caitriona also found some personal connection to the characters in the movie. Jamie commented, “I recognized so much of my own father, his father, uncles, family friends, so many people from my own personal life I recognized in the character, and it's very rare that happens.”

“This is a movie in the town that I'm from. It felt important to be able to tell this story and show it through a different lens, because I'll probably never do anything so personal again,” Dornan emphasized.

Caitriona chimed in, “When I read the script, Ma and everyone, they just felt very familiar. I'm not from Belfast, but I'm from not very far from there, and I think there's a through line of Irish mothers and their ferocity and their capacity to give you a scalp around the ear, but also hug you so tight you might pass out as well.”

As for the positive reception to the movie, Jamie said he isn’t letting it go to his head. He elaborated, “You're not blind to it, but for us, I think it is about enjoying the work... I think we'll just keep trying to remember the work we put in and how much we got out of that.”

“Belfast” hits theaters November 12.

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